31 May 2012

The Visitation of the Virgin Mary


This is a day to honour the Blessed Virgin Mary, who bore in her womb the Incarnate Word of God. The Feast of the Visitation shows her as the first missionary and evangelist, as she takes the Word to her cousin Elizabeth. The unborn infant, St. John, was cleansed from original sin as the two expectant mothers embraced. St. Elizabeth addressed her as the "Mother of the Lord," and Mary responded with the great canticle of praise, the Magnificat: "My soul doth magnify the Lord, and my spirit hath rejoiced in God my Savior. Because he that is mighty, hath done great things to me, and holy is His name" (Lk. 1:46).

Father in heaven, by whose grace the Virgin Mother of thine incarnate Son was blessed in bearing him, but still more blessed in keeping thy word: Grant that we who honour the exaltation of her lowliness may follow the example of her devotion to thy will; through the same Jesus Christ thy Son our Lord, who liveth and reigneth with thee and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.